THE WALKING DEAD Season 2 premiered last night in the U.S. and even the hordes of the undead were unable to prevent the huge viewership the show received. Taking in 7.3 million viewers for the episode, cancelling any doubt from industry pundits that the show was in trouble, it smashed its pilot season ones’ 5.2 million.
This from the awesome Nellie Andreeva over at Deadline:
Behind-the-scenes turmoil did little to slow down The Walking Dead ratings behemoth, which opened its second season at 9 PM last night to staggering numbers:
4.8 million viewers in Adults 18-49
4.2 million viewers in Adults 25-54
7.3 million total viewers for premiere
11 million total viewers for the night
The 18-49 and 25-54 tallies broke basic cable’s previous records posted by the premiere of USA Network’s The Dead Zone in June 2002 (4.0 million in 18-49, 4.1 million in 25-54). Compared with Walking Dead‘s highly rated series premiere last year (5.2 million total viewers, 3.5 million in 18-49), the Season 2 opener was up a whopping 38% in total viewers, 36% in 18-49 and 35% in 25-54. With the 9 PM airing and the 10:30 PM and 12:30 AM encores, the Walking Dead premiere drew a total of 11 million viewers. “The Walking Dead is one of those rare television programs that reaches both a core genre fan as well as broad audiences simply looking for a great, character-based story,” said AMC president Charlie Collier. “That The Walking Dead is now the most-watched drama in the history of basic cable is staggering, just like our zombies.” UPDATE: AMC’s talk show Talking Dead got off to a solid start at midnight, following the first rerun of the Walking Dead premiere. It averaged 1.2 million total viewers, 795,000 adults 18-49 and 735,000 adults 25-54.
THE WALKING DEAD SEASON 2 TRAILER